Have your say on sexual health services
The review of the service will be discussed by cabinet this month, and if they agree a consultation will begin soon after.
The purpose of the consultation is to seek people's views on how they think the current sexual health service is being delivered in their community and how it could be improved.
It's a priority for the council to make sure our sexual health services meet the needs of all areas of our communities and especially those who are most vulnerable.
If cabinet are happy to go ahead, the review will have a specific emphasis on relationships, consent, safety, prevention of disease and unintended outcomes, like unwanted pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases. It will help the council to develop the most effective approaches that inspire people to live healthier lives.
The consultation will outline four principles that the public will be asked for their opinions on. They are:
· People should find it easy to access the care they need, regardless of the service they require or the location they attend. This means people can easily move within the sexual health system and can expect a consistent standard of care.
· Services provide care focused on need - ensuring those who most need help have access to specialist services targeted to their needs. We know that there are some groups of people who are particularly vulnerable to poor sexual health outcomes. Services should be designed so that they are targeted to the needs of those groups.
· Prevention of poor sexual health outcomes is a priority. This means focusing on preventing people from having poor sexual health outcomes (such as unplanned pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections) through education, access to information, and targeted schemes for vulnerable or high-need groups.
· Technology is used to allow people to access services most appropriate for them, and, where possible, choose online or self care. This means that information is easily accessible to allow individuals to access services most convenient for them and can choose the option of home and self sampling/testing services.
Cllr Andrew Gravells, cabinet member for public health at Gloucestershire County Council, said: "We want to make our services as accessible as possible so people can make informed decisions about their sexual health. This review will help us understand more about how we can do that.
"If cabinet agree to go ahead and consult, I'd really like to encourage people to have their say on this service. Gloucestershire must do all it can to promote safe sexual behaviour and provide the support that is needed. In order to this in the best way possible, we need to hear the public's opinion."